Exhibition : Photographs 1980/2002
|With this exhibition, Manuela Marques chooses to show pictures of "different styles and manners...each of them is at the same time a unique production among all the others, which creates a discursive relationship with one another", rather than to confine herself to a single subject which so would allow an easier understanding of her work through formal variations.
Such an unusual choice can but produce a feeling of strangeness. But, beyond this first impression, a coherent, discernible thread crisscrosses the works. The people placed on their own in a natural or artificial background make a gesture, utter a word, look in the distance at something unseen, or are overwhelmed with anxiety . Far from staring at the camera, on the contrary, they try to look away from it or to protect themselves by hiding their eyes, in order to be closer to their inner selves. This attitude, caught in its immediacy, is only the visible part of a larger movement from one state to another. It is the mark of the language of the body, the vocabulary of which is left to the onlooker's understanding. By revealing expectations , between dumb withdrawal and sheer absence, these movements belong to interiority as well as exteriority . These people, trying to retire from reality they feel alien to in order to let themselves be absorbed in their restless wonder, look as if they had been "hurled" into the world, to use Heidegger's word. This world, whether shown in the shape of a huge wave or as an unattended pile of wood, without any human being in sight, seems to reveal how wild and threatening it is, which we had perhaps forgotten. And so we too are invited to wonder at the world and share the same dumb restlessness as the people in the photographs in front of what is.